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RESEARCH PROJECTS

 

SELECTED EXPERIMENTS

FIELD-BASED PARTICLE TRACKING VELOCIMETRY

Field Experiments: Spring 2021
Pacific City, Oregon

We are designing, developing and deploying the first field-based particle tracking velocimetry system for subaerial environments. The goal of this research is to unobtrusively measure velocity vectors of turbulence and the resulting aeolian sand transport across various wind regimes to derive a model of aeolian transport based on field observations.

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DUNEX - THE DURING NEARSHORE EVENT EXPERIMENTS

Field Experiments: Fall 2019
Outer Banks, North Carolina

The goal of this research was to measure windblown sand in the nearshore during the passage of Tropical Storm Nestor. We successfully collected velocity profiles, 3-D velocity fluctuations of the wind and vertical distributions of transport over a very wet beach. Our first paper from this research is in-review at Aeolian Research.

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INNERSHELF DYNAMICS EXPERIMENT

Field Experiments: Fall 2017
R/V Sally Ride
California Innershelf

The Innershelf Dynamics Experiment was a multiagency collaboration of science operating across the Innershelf. Our focus was to measure bottom boundary layer turbulence during the passage of internal waves. I lived aboard the R/V Sally Ride for a total of 1 month deploying and recording moorings, collecting CTD profiles and watching some killer sunsets. We have a couple of manuscripts in progress regarding this work, but our larger paper was recently accepted for publication in BAMS, The Innershelf Dynamics Experiment.

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THRESHOLD OF MOTION ON MARS

Wind Tunnel Experiments: Spring/Fall 2015
Planetary Aeolian Laboratory
NASA Ames 
Mountain View, CA

For this work I redesigned a sand trap to separate creep, reptation and saltation under simulated Martian atmospheric conditions. The goal was to determine the fluid threshold of motion for windblown sand on Mars. We ultimately published our results in GRL, Experimentally-derived thresholds for windblown sand on Mars, and our paper won the 2020 G.K. Gilbert Award. This work has become a springboard for upcoming research on the effect of atmospheric density on ripple wavelength. 

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THRESHOLD OF MOTION ON EARTH

Field Experiments: Fall 2012
Jericoacoara, Brazil

My research in Brazil was centered on deploying a sand trap that I designed to separate creep and reptation from saltation in a natural boundary layer. I built a sand trap with an internal piezoelectric sensor to record the impacts of creep and reptation as they entered the trap and get grain size statistics. The goal of the research was to measure the fluid threshold of motion for creep/reptation in a field environment.  I have 2 publications from this work both published in Aeolian Research: A bedload trap for aeolian sand transport and A high-efficiency low-cost aeolian sand trap

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MAGNITUDE AND FREQUENCY OF WIND EVENTS

Field Experiments: Fall/Spring 2008
Jockey's Ride, North Carolina

I deployed a long-term monitoring station for windblown sand on Jockey's Ridge in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. The goal of the research was to create the Wind Power Index (WPI), an index that combines the duration and excess shear velocity of wind events to determine the sand transport potential. I used a peaks-over-threshold analysis to determine the sand transport potential of measured wind events and compared those observations to measured sand transport at my field site.

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